Sailing large

Sailing large – Thomas says that sailing large is not Impérieuse’s best point of sail. He means running before the wind, or sailing directly away from the wind. This may seem counterintuitive for a square-rigged ship, but while the mizzenmast’s sails near the sterns catch the wind and push the boat forwards, they take much of the wind from the mainmast’s sails and the two masts then rob the foremast’s sails of all wind, leaving them hanging limply, providing little thrust. With the wind off one side and from aft of the mast but not too much aft (i.e. in a broad or beam reach position), all the sails can contribute to the thrust and the ship moves more quickly.

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